Wisconsin State Law Library

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WSLL @ Your Service June 2023

Is the Legislature in Session? Capitol Flag Poles - Keely Wrolstad

Wisconsin Capitol

Each of the Wisconsin State Capitol wings has its own flag pole. The Governor's Office decides what is on two of them: the North and the East Wings. The Governor's Office is in the East Wing and the pole flies the United States flag and the State of Wisconsin flag. Occasionally, the Governor orders other flags flown, such as the Juneteenth flag to commemorate the end of slavery. The North Wing pole, where the Grand Army of the Republic Memorial Hall is, flies the POW-MIA flag at all times. (See: Wisconsin State Journal: Just Ask Us - Does Old Glory fly only when Gov. Scott Walker is working in the Capitol?)

The other two poles on the Capitol building's wings fly the United States and Wisconsin flags when the legislative body that is housed in that wing has a floor session. The Senate is in the South Wing and the Assembly is in the West Wing. According to the Senate Sergeant-at-Arms, there are generally two reasons that a flag may be hoisted on the South Wing pole.

First, as mentioned above, flags may be raised when the Senate is in session. On the day of a State Senate floor session, a Senate Sergeant staff member will hoist the flags approximately one hour before and lower one hour after the day's floor session. If the Senate floor session extends beyond daylight hours, the flags are illuminated. These flags are 5 feet 10 inches by 10 feet.

Smaller flags can be purchased and hoisted at the request of a Senator, the Chief Clerk, or the Sergeant-At-Arms of the Wisconsin State Senate. The size of these flags are 3 feet by 5 feet and they are hoisted to full staff briefly, and then lowered. Flags raised in this manner are generally done on a specific date and for a variety of reasons. The State Senate Chief Clerk's Office will, if requested, prepare a certificate that is signed by the Chief Clerk and has the date of reason the flag was raised.

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New Books - Kari Zelinka

book cover

New Update! Sack on Defamation: Libel, Slander, and Related Problems, by Hon. Robert D. Sack, updated April 2023
Call Number: KF 1266 .S22

Do you know when insults and name-calling cross over into defamation? This recently updated book covers that topic and more. Both plaintiffs' and defense attorneys will benefit from reviewing the criteria for a defamation claim. In addition, the author offers guidance on how to meet the burden of proof for various claims and win reasonable damages. If you need to advise clients on how to disseminate their views without resulting in costly lawsuits, this treatise is a good place to start. 

Other topics include:

  • Constitutional principles
  • Truth and criminal libel
  • Absolute privilege, immunity, and preemption
  • Qualified privilege
  • Damages and other remedies
  • Discovery, sources, confidentiality, and anonymity
  • Jurisdiction and choice of law
  • Motion practice and appeal
  • Insurance policies

book cover

New Edition! U.S. Immigration Made Easy, by Ilona M. Bray, 21st edition, 2023
Call Number: KF4819.6 .U2 2023

If you have questions about applying for a visa, U.S. residency, or how to avoid deportation, check out Immigration Made Easy, by Ilona Bray. The 21st edition has recently been updated to include changes on DACA, U visas, asylum and more. The author discusses how to obtain the correct forms, strategies for dealing with delays and denials, and how to select the right attorney.

Other topics include:

  • Obtaining proof of U.S. Citizenship
  • Dual citizenship
  • Attending interviews with USCIS or consular officials
  • Getting a Green Card through family members in the U.S.
  • Getting a Green Card through employment
  • Nonimmigrant (temporary) visas
  • Deferred action for childhood arrivals (DACA)
  • Getting a U visa as a crime victim assisting law enforcement


New Titles RSS Feed See our latest New Titles list for a list of new books and other resources.

For assistance in accessing these or other resources, please contact our Reference Desk.

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Tech Tip - Heidi Yelk

It's time to set out the orange cones once again. As you plan summer travel, the Wisconsin Department of Transportation's 511WI website can provide a quick overview of road construction and, most importantly, road/route closures. On the 511WI website, check the "Roadwork" box to display road construction and closure sites.

511 WI screenshot

The map provides a visual of which roads are closed from point A to point B. The pop-up summary also includes detour information, a start date, and expected finish date for the project.

511 WI map

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Library News - Carol Hassler

Libraries closed for holidays

The Dane County Law Library and Milwaukee County Law Library will be closed on Monday, June 19th in observance of Juneteenth. Send questions and requests to the State Law Library at wsll.ref@wicourts.gov or call at 608-267-9696.

All three libraries will be closed on Tuesday, July 4th in observance of the Fourth of July. Send questions and requests to wsll.ref@wicourts.gov or leave a message at 608-267-9696. We'll get back to you on Wednesday, July 5th.

Welcome to new staff

We are pleased to announce Chris Schroeder as our new Library Assistant. He has greeted library visitors at the Circulation desk since June of 2022. Before that, he spent over 8 years working at the Middleton Public Library. Chris graduated from UW-Whitewater and completed a Master of Arts in Library and Information Studies with the UW-Milwaukee.

Water law series garners commendation

Last month the State Bar of Wisconsin's Communications Committee, which serves as the Wisconsin Lawyer editorial board, chose this past year's water law series to receive a special commendation for writing excellence. The committee noted, "The year-long water law series highlighted legal issues that impact us all." Librarian Carol Hassler contributed a research guide to this effort. Congratulations to all the contributors!

Summer classes

There is still space available in our summer in-person classes! There are two separate sessions offered for these morning research surveys.

Summer School - Online Legal Research 101 at the Wisconsin State Law Library
Two sessions offered! Choose from:
Thursday, June 8, 9:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Thursday, July 13, 9:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Location: David T. Prosser Jr. Library, training room. Register for this in-person class by sending an email to Abigail Case (abigail.case@wicourts.gov)
This three hour, in-person session includes instruction in using two premium databases offered onsite at the Wisconsin State Law Library -- Westlaw Classic and Lexis Advance. Learn the database interface, case law searching, citation tools, practice area resources and finding secondary sources. The third hour of the class is dedicated to free online case research tools including Google Scholar, Google Books, and wicourts.gov.

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June Snapshot

Manitowoc County Courthouse

The Courthouse Dome "County Dome," Manitowoc County Courthouse, May 2018.

The NeoClassical-style Manitowoc County Courthouse, completed in 1907, was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1981. The dome is seen as the "civic image of Manitowoc County Government." and holds a significant place in architectural history for the time period of 1900-1924.

The building and dome are currently undergoing study for repair and restoration. Read about this project, review related documents and learn more about the history of the courthouse on the "Courthouse Dome and Facility Improvements Study" webpage from Manitowoc County.

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